Archive for September, 2010

Congress Holds High End Mortgage Limits at $730,000

September 30, 2010 Leave a comment

Congress has extended a policy that allows homeowners in pricey real estate markets to secure government-backed mortgage of nearly $730,000.

Fuse | Getty Images

Lawmakers have voted to keep the maximum size of loans guaranteed byFannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Administrationat the current level through the end of 2011.

Those limits apply in expensive areas like New York and San Francisco. Without the change, the limits would have fallen to about $625,000.

The limit was $417,000 before 2008 and remains at that level in most of the country.

The measure was included in a temporary spending bill that lawmakers sent to President Barack Obama early Thursday.

Mike Harper
Private Mortgage Banker

949.661.1161 Tel


The Housing Market is Doomed! Really?…

September 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Though the general consensus via most talking heads is that things are spiraling out of control there are plenty of voices of reason that are taking a counter stand to that concept.  Here are just a couple of examples:

“…the negative news regarding housing is overblown. Cramer said the Case-Shiller housing data, released Tuesday, confirms stability in housing prices and also verifies that a bottom was reached last year. Yet the bears won’t allow this empirical evidence to be heard.”

-Jim Cramer from CNBC’s Mad Money

Click the link to read Jim Cramer’s: 7 Reasons the Market Stays Higher in its entirety.

“Enough with the Doom and Gloom about Homeownership.” – WSJ 9/16/2010

WOW! If that quote was attributed to the National Association of Realtors or the National Association of Home Builders, it would have been quickly dismissed. However, it was the Wall Street Journal that was calling for the end of the ‘doom and gloom’ talk surrounding real estate.

We are finally seeing a powerful backlash to all the recent claims that homeownership should never have been part of the American Dream. It is about time!

We have been posting on the financial advantages and the other non-financial benefits of homeownership for over a year. We must admit that, at times, we felt very lonely. It now seems that we are part of an ever growing army of believers preaching the advantages and opportunities available in today’s real estate market. Who have joined this cause? Let’s name a few.

The Wall Street Journal

In an article last week, 10 Reasons To Buy a Home, Brett Arends reported:

Sure, maybe there’s more pain to come in the housing market. But when Time magazine starts running covers that declare “Owning a home may no longer make economic sense,” it’s time to say: Enough is enough.

He then posted 10 reasons to buy a home today:

  1. You can get a good deal.
  2. Mortgages are cheap.
  3. You can save on taxes.
  4. It will be yours.
  5. You’ll get a better home.
  6. It offers some inflation protection.
  7. It’s risk capital.
  8. It’s forced savings.
  9. There is a lot to choose from.
  10. Sooner or later, the market will clear.

-From Steve Harney’s – the Keeping Current Matter Blog

Weekly Economic Financial Commentary

September 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Interesting information.

Weekly Economic Financial Commentary

The Good, the Bad, the Ugly, in South Orange County Real Estate.

September 25, 2010 Leave a comment

I’ve become really interested in the way this housing market has impacted individual neighborhoods in South Orange County……

Preparations begin for Elwah River Dam removal!

September 23, 2010 Leave a comment

One hundred pound king salmon (and massive runs of coho, pinks, chums, sockeye, steelhead, bull trout and cutthroat trout) used to swim up the Elwah River on Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula…that is, before Elwha and Glines Canyon dams were built just 5 miles up from saltwater in the the early 1900s. Once one of Washington’s most prolific salmon producers, the Elwah took a huge nosedive after the dams were erected.

But that’s about to change…

After a long fight, the two dams are scheduled to be removed in 2011 (with work already starting now…see the story in the
SEATTLE TIMES) in what is going to be the largest project of its kind in the U.S. What’s really freakin’ cool is the river above the dams flows largely through Olympic National Park, where the spawning and rearing habitat is as pristine as it was before the dams! I’ve been up in that part of the world and the river is amazing! Think about it for a second: 70 miles of river plus endless tribs that are in primo condition. This could be one of the greates fishery restoration successes in history!

Of course, there are some inherent problems with dam removal…like what the heck do you do with all the sediment built up behind the dams? Water treatment facilities are being built now to help but it’s not going to be a small task.

For a lot more info on the Elwah restoration project, check out the National Parks Service.

by JD on SEPTEMBER 22, 2010,  fishwithjd

SOLD…Old Town Fullerton, Orange County, CA

September 22, 2010 Leave a comment


September 22, 2010 Leave a comment

Did you know that if you sell your house after 2012 you will pay a 3.8% sales tax on it?